Workers’ compensation is insurance that your job offers to provide replacement wages and medical benefits to an injured employee. In exchange for this, however, you trade in the right to sue for negligence. Although it might not be obvious at first, there are five excellent reasons that you should consider placing a workers’ compensation claim.
It Can Provide Medical Coverage
Workers’ compensation can provide medical coverage which pays for occupational injuries or illnesses incurred on the job as well as:
- Doctors visits
- Nursing care
- Medical diagnostic tests
- Hospital treatment
- Physical therapy
- Medical equipment (wheelchairs and crutches)
While these benefits are available until the injury has been healed, some state laws may have restrictions on some treatments. Said restrictions can be along the lines as having a set limit of how many doctors visits you can have for your injury or whether or not alternative treatments, like massage therapy, are covered. The Hartford describes how the coverage of treatments can vary from state to state because the state regulates the requirements.
It Can Offset Lower Wages
Many people seeking workers’ compensation want to know is if they can still work and if they can, can it be for the same employer? The answer is yes, but only if you’re making 80% less of your original wages. Regardless of the reason why you’re receiving lower wages, workers comp can make up for it. HawkLaw explains how you can receive two-thirds of the difference between your old wages and your new until you are able to return to your job.
It Can Pay for Rehabilitation
Depending on the state that you are in, you can qualify for vocational rehabilitation if you are unable to go back to your old job because of a work injury. Vocational rehabilitation will help prepare you for a new career. Some states also provide psychological rehabilitation for any mental injuries that might be incurred while working.
It Can Provide Disability Pay
Disability pay is provided to compensate for the wages lost while disabled due to a work-related injury or illness. DisabilitySecrets describes how benefits are determined based on the severity of the injury and the ability of the employee to return to work either in a short term or long term capacity. The types of different disabilities are classified into four categories:
- Temporary total – When a worker is completely disabled and can’t work for a short amount of time. The worker is paid throughout the duration of their being disabled.
- Temporary partial – The worker is partially disabled by a short-term injury and receives reduced pay for the work that they are able to perform.
- Permanent total – The worker has an incurable permanent injury and is paid weekly for the remainder of their life
- Permanent partial – The worker has a permanent injury that negatively impacts their income and is paid for a specified number of weeks depending on the injury they’ve received.
It Can Provide Death Benefits and Cover Burial Costs
In most states, in the event of an employee’s death, their family, meaning the spouse, minor children or any other legal dependents, can collect a lump-sum payment and have the burial fees covered by the worker’s compensation claim.
While workers’ compensation is essentially a safety net for businesses and workplaces, it can provide valuable benefits for workers that make it well worth considering. If you decide to pursue a workers’ comp claim, be sure you are well versed with your state’s guidelines and that you speak with a workers’ compensation attorney.
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